by Elizabeth Wehman, editor

MEETING FOR THE FIRST TIME is the 100+ Women Who Care of the Greater Durand Area on Thursday, Sept. 22. Two of the group organizers are shown and include (in background) Leslie Dietrich and at right, Shari Demo. In the foreground, Chairman Jan Harper of the Durand Area Schools Educational Foundation is presenting the information regarding her group to the women at the event. (Independent Photo/Elizabeth Wehman)

Three nonprofit organizations presented their goals, history, and even future dreams to the 100+ Women Who Care of the Greater Durand Area group on Thursday, Sept. 22 at the Durand First United Methodist Church. Sixty women were on hand for the first ever meeting of the newly formed group.

The goal of the group is to support the local community of the Greater Durand area (Durand, Byron, Bancroft, Lennon, Gaines, and Vernon) by contributing to local charities together, as a unit, to increase the impact of their donation. Group organizers include Shari Demo, Leslie Dietrich, Kasey Fiebernitz, Linda Greeson, Debbie Lintz, Karla Luchenbill, and Kathy Wilson.

The 100+ Women Who Care groups meet a few times each year and replace the normal way of raising money by having fundraising dinners, raffles, or even parties, substituting it with a short meeting in which three nonprofit organizations present their mission statements and goals to the group in short five minute presentations. From those presentations, the 100+ Women Who Care group votes on their favorite choice and instantly, each member writes $100 checks to be given to that particular charity. In this format, the group collectively can raise greater amounts in a short time and forgo the need for decorations, meals, long events, and even asking for funds from local businesses.

At the September meeting, the group voted to give their first donation to the Durand Area Schools Educational Foundation group. The foundation provides expanded learning experience to school enrichment groups as well as students. Currently, the group has also been given a donation from an alumnus who will double any amount given to their group, up to $10,000. The amount given from the 100+ Women Who Care group was $6,000 on Thursday evening, which will inevitably be doubled to $12,000. Chairman of the foundation group Jan Harper said, “This is a phenomenal experience for all nonprofits in the Durand area. We are thrilled to be the first recipients.”

One of the group’s organizers, Shari Demo, had this to say about the first meeting: “We are so excited. We want others to invite a buddy to be a part of the program. We’re just thrilled to death.” For more information about the group or to possibly join, interested persons may find them online at The group will meet again on March 23, 2017.

New Philanthropic Group Meets for First Time was last modified: October 3rd, 2016 by Karen Elford